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Hillary Clinton Chooses Tim Kaine for VP

Hillary Clinton Chooses Tim Kaine for VP


The presumptive Democratic nominee for president chooses the Virginia senator.

Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, has chosen Tim Kaine as her running mate.

The U.S. senator from Virginia, formerly the state's governor, is considered a moderate. Kaine was once only a lukewarm supporter of LGBT causes and an outright opponent of marriage equality. In 2001, when he was running for lieutenant governor of Virginia, he told the Associated Press, "I have never said I supported gay civil unions, gay marriages. I do believe that people shouldn't be kicked out of their jobs or discriminated against because of who they are."

Kaine did say he supported some way to give same-sex couples in long-term relationships access to certain benefits enjoyed by married opposite-sex couples.

But in 2006, as governor, he campaigned against a measure to amend the state's constitution to ban same-sex marriage; it passed anyway. When running for governor in 2005, he opposed adoption rights for gay couples or individuals, but by 2011, running for Senate, he had changed his mind and said they should be able to adopt if a judge determined that it was the best interest of the child. As governor he issued an executive order banning antigay discrimination against state employees. In 2013, his first year in the Senate, he announced his support for marriage equality. So far in his Senate service, he has received a 90 percent rating on the Human Rights Campaign's Congressional Scorecard.

Kaine outlines his stance on LGB issues, though not transgender issues, on his website:

"I believe all people, regardless of sexual orientation, should be guaranteed equal rights, including the legal benefits and responsibilities of marriage. As Governor, I campaigned against an amendment to the Virginia constitution that banned any legal recognition of same-sex relationships and signed an executive order to ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. As Senator, I was proud to join many of my colleagues in signing the bipartisan amicus brief to the Supreme Court that detailed our belief that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional. In November 2013, I was proud to help the Senate pass theEmployment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) to ensure that workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation will not be tolerated. I will continue to support efforts to ensure equal treatment under the law."

Regarding women's issues, Kaine introduced legislation protecting access to contraceptives. The senator, though, is a practicing Catholic and supports restrictions on certain types of abortion while still supporting a woman's right to choose, according to the BBC. Regardless, he has a 100 percent rating from Planned Parenthood.

Clinton's decision was influenced by the fact that if she wins in November, Kaine will be replaced by a Democratic senator, since Democratic Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe will choose a shorterm successor to Kaine.

On gun control, Kaine states he supports the Second Amendment but wants more done to stem violence, according to his website:

"I support a comprehensive approach to curb gun violence which includes expanding mental health services, background record checks prior to gun purchases and responsible limits on combat combat-style weapons and high-capacity magazines.

I've been disappointed to see the Senate block commonsense legislation to address these issues but will continue to advocate for ways to reduce make our country safer.

I supported the Manchin-Toomey bill, which would have required background checks on all commercial sales of guns, including sales at gun shows and internet sales, as well as strengthened the existing instant check system by encouraging states to put all their available records into the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). In addition, I cosponsored legislation to close a loophole that allows gun sales to proceed if a background check is not completed after 72 hours, even if the gun buyer is not legally allowed to purchase a gun. I also authored the Responsible Transfer of Firearms Act, which would hold people responsible if they sell or transfer a firearm to someone who is barred by federal law from possessing firearms. Ultimately, efforts to reduce gun violence must focus on multiple solutions, but passage of these bills would be an important step in the right direction."

The National Rifle Association gave Kaine an "F" for his gun control advocacy.

Kaine, who speaks Spanish, supports immigration reform, and hopes to expand the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) programs.

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